Troitsa: Mystic music from Belarus
Not many releases come this way from Belarus, the land-locked and still politically unrelaxed country surrounded by the Baltic states, Poland, Ukraine and Russia, but several of those have been earlier releases from Minsk trio Troitsa, and they chart the progress to this sixth album.
Ivan Kirchuk is the possessor of one of those real, rumbling bass voices that seem to flourish in Russia and its near neighbours, and conjures mental images of a huge bearded Cossack in boots and floor-length furs.
He formed the original trio in 1996 to perform the traditional material he’d been finding since the 1980s in the villages of Belarus. After its first album the group broke up, but after a pause Kirchuk recruited Yuri Dmitriev and Yuri Pavlovsky, who supplement his armoury of 12-string guitar, domra, gusli, Jew’s-harp, whistles, zhaleika and more with guitar, bass, domra, kalimba and percussion.
His singing tends to stay down in the gravelly basement, accessing tones that an epic film-trailer voice-over artist would kill for, but on occasion he rises through the frequencies, right up to a rather finely-controlled falsetto-alto.
The band’s music is quite ethereal, almost mystical, Ivan’s voice is strikingly shamanic, the melodies are simple and almost ascetic, the arrangements reveal virtuosity in the blendingof modern and ancient instruments. It makes Troitsa to be understandable all around the world.
No knowledge of Belorussian is necessary to be enthralled by the mature, meditative message delivered by Troitsa’s music nor to be captivated by its fascinatingly modern rendering.
Three men, 50 instruments… The same protective zeal is applied to the region's instruments; they play in the region of 50 of these, from zithers and mouth harps to the more obscure zhaleika hornpipe and the lute-like domra. But no matter what the instrument, these beautiful and evocative tunes carry us on wings of song to a point 1,000 miles east of here.
Belarusian trio Troitsa released their vibrant sixth album “Zimachka” (“Winter”) this year. Troitsa combines the rich folk music traditions of Belarus (an eastern European nation located between Poland and Russia) with contemporary elements. “We work with an ethno-fusion style,” says group leader Yuri Pavlovski. “Our aim is to connect old Belorussian music to modern sounding acoustic music tools. Our collective has existed for more than 12 years.” Troitsa uses a wide variety of traditional Belarusian musical instruments such as domra (three-stringed mandolin), smyk, gusli (zither), pipes, whistles, mound harmonica, reed stick, zhaleykas (single-reed hornpipe), lyre, ocarinas, and wargan (jawharp); joined by global percussion and persuasive guitars. On "Zimachka" you will find dazzling acoustic interplay by the Belarusian masters of ‘ethno fusion’ music.
|15.07.2016||WOMAD UK||Charlton Park, Malmesbury, Wiltshire||United Kingdom|
|08.04.2016||Youth Estrade Theatre||Minsk||Belarus|
|27.04.2015||Sharko' Republic Palace of Culture||Minsk||Belarus|
|08.11.2014||Grand Concert Hall of Belarusian State Philharmonic Society||Minsk||Belarus|
|06.09.2014||Kamyanitsa Folk Festival||Kamyanitsa||Belarus|
|19.07.2014||Basowiszcza Festival||Gmina of Grodek||Poland|
|23.04.2014||Grand Concert Hall of Belarusian State Philharmonic Society||Minsk||Belarus|
|27.09.2013||Wschod Kultury/Inny Wymiar||Bialystok||Poland|
|20.07.2013||Etnosur||Alcala la Real||Spain|
|13.07.2013||Pirineos Sur||Sallent de Gallego||Spain|
|30.01.2013||Grand Concert Hall of Belarusian State Philharmonic Society||Minsk||Belarus|
|02.09.2012||Vilnius Music Week||Vilnius||Lithuania|
|22.07.2012||Etnosur||Alcala la Real||Spain|
|14.07.2012||SommerFestival der Kulturen||Stuttgart||Germany|
|25.01.2012||Grand Concert Hall of Belarusian State Philharmonic Society||Minsk||Belarus|
|14.11.2011||Small Hall - Minsk Concert Hall||Minsk||Belarus|
|03.09.2011||Kamyanitsa Folk Festival||Kamyanitsa||Belarus|
|23.07.2011||Z Wiejskiego Podworza Festival||Czeremcha||Poland|
|27.04.2011||Small Hall - Minsk Concert Hall||Minsk||Belarus|
|30.05.2010||Small Hall - Minsk Concert Hall||Minsk||Belarus|
|05.11.2009||Porta World Music Festival||Riga||Latvia|
|25.09.2009||EthnoMechanica Festival||Saint Petersburg||Russia|
|11.09.2009||Koktebel Jazz Festival||Koktebel||Ukraine|
|13.07.2009||Haus der Sinne Berlin||Berlin||Germany|